Supreme Court declines to hear case challenging Chesapeake Bay ‘pollution diet’- Baltimore Sun

This is likely to be one of the more important environmental decisions of the decade, and distinctly affects Puget Sound cleanup/recovery efforts. The Court has essentially agreed with the lower courts, in saying that EPA does have the authority to regulate the nutrient and sediment runoff into watersheds.

The Supreme Court said Monday it would not hear a challenge to the “pollution diet” set for the Chesapeake Bay, in effect upholding the blueprint for a substantial cleanup by 2025. The American Farm Bureau Federation and its allies said the federal Environmental Protection Agency had overstepped its authority in establishing the plan to limit nutrient and sediment runoff across the bay watershed. But a federal appeals court sided with the EPA last year, and with the high court’s refusal to take the matter up, that ruling will stand. The decision could strengthen efforts to impose similar water quality improvement plans across the country. Agriculture and business groups say they fear it could set a precedent that gives the EPA extensive power over state and local land use. Scott Dance reports. (Baltimore Sun)

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